Diamonds / Industry

Alrosa Looking At How Kimberlite Can Grab CO2


Alrosa has launched a preliminary study to see if the kimberlite ore that is used for diamond mining can be used to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

The study, conducted with leading Russian research organizations, will run until 2023.

The work is similar to research now being undertaken by rival miner De Beers, which has said it hopes to be carbon neutral by 2030.

An Alrosa statement said the initial results show that kimberlite’s CO2 absorption potential is comparable to, and could even be several times greater than, Alrosa’s overall carbon emissions. For example, the CO2 absorption from the kimberlite in its Udachnaya pipe was found to reach as high as 80 kg per ton of processed raw material, which is almost four times greater than Alrosa’s average annual CO2 emission, the statement said.

Mikhail Dubovichev, head of Alrosa’s innovation and technology center, said in the same statement that “if future research confirms the preliminary data found, we will have established significant potential for compensating greenhouse gas emissions in diamond mining through the ore’s ability to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This discovery could mark a new step in the efforts to preserve our planet’s ecosystem.”

Polina Anisimova, chief ecologist at Alrosa, said that the company currently generates about 90% of its power from renewable sources.

“[Alrosa’s] logistics function is replacing traditional liquid fuel with natural gas, enabling a structural reduction in greenhouse gas emissions,” she said in the same statement. “However, achieving carbon neutrality today merely by upgrading [our] existing production processes is challenging.”

She added that “Alrosa’s ambitious carbon-neutrality goals can only be met through a combined approach that also includes absorbing CO2 from the atmosphere and offset measures.”

In 2020, Alrosa’s direct emissions amounted to 997,000 tons of CO2 equivalent, the statement said.

Top: An Alrosa mine (photo courtesy of Alrosa)  

Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Twitter: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Facebook: @jckmagazine

By: Rob Bates

Log Out

Are you sure you want to log out?

CancelLog out